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When in doubt – ask!  This is a slogan I learned “along the way” and decided to apply it before writing this blog.  You see, I got to wondering if my readers – ladies-of-a-certain-age – really cared about a special fashion report.  I thought you might since we are never shown in fashion ads or articles, but I wasn’t sure.

So, I set out to do an informal market research study.  First, I asked a group of women who had taken my recent class, “Challenges for Women over 60,” when we  gathered at the lovely home of a classmate for tea; then, I asked my hair stylist, who had just turned 50; and finally, I queried a group of women sitting with me at a dinner.

Well, I am delighted to report that these women eagerly engaged in conversation about fashion and resoundingly encouraged me to “keep writing your blog, Elizabeth.”

In this 2018 spring fashion report for ladies-of-a-certain-age, I am sharing my market research findings, giving  you a brief list of latest fashion trends and colors, and sharing my personal experience of on-line shopping.

Market Research Findings

Comfort is the number one consideration for buying a piece of clothing

Women our age want to wear what they buy for more than one season

Color is key.  They told me.  I was surprised with how many women knew their color season

Also, I was impressed that their fashion personality type  played such a key role in their buying decisions (All of the fashion types were represented in my survey.)

Hard to find clothes that fit was a universal lament of the group

They love to shop consignment stores, Good Will, hospice and other nonprofit shops

Surprisingly, almost all of the women told me they were doing more on-line shopping; however, they stated finding the right fit and returns were challenging  (I’ve listed the online retailers below.)

Many mourned the loss of favorite retailers and were concerned others would soon close their door

One woman asked, “Do you think it is appropriate for women our age not to dress their age? “ “No,” was the resounding answer

Brief List of Latest Fashion Trends and Colors 

Romance (ruffles, and fabrics that seem to float)


Sparkle (my hair stylist will love this)

White shirts

Trumpet sleeves (watch out if you have a gas stove)

Pant Suits (I loved them in the past – now, that I make so many trips to the loo, I don’t think so)

Trench coat look


Fringe continues its appeal

Asymmetrical neckline

Black and white dots

Square neckline

Backpacks for a purse

Shoes – good news – sneakers, mules, flats still stylish in case you do not want to wear stilettos (How does  US House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi, 77,  and PBS NewsHour Anchor Judy Woodruff, 71,  do it?)

For this list, I consulted these sites and often chuckled  at what I saw







My Personal Experience of On-Line Shopping

This year I bought flannel pajamas, cozy warm slippers and panties from Amazon, bras from Nordstrom Rack, and a necklace, crops and a top from j. jill.   In the past, I have bought clothing from Eddie Bauer, and Lands’ End.

I was very pleased with my red and green flannel pajamas, fleece lined slippers and panties.  Because I am an Amazon Prime member, I did not have to pay any shipping.  I bought my panties there because K-Mart, where I used to buy them, has gone out of business.  I knew the size and style I wanted, so there was no problem.  When I lived in a large metropolitan area, I would journey to Nordstrom Rack to buy bras because I got such a great deal on them.  I was pleased to find they brand, style and colors I have purchased before on their website.  Even though I had to pay for shipping, the bras were still a bargain.  J. jill got me with one of their fabulous sells shortly after Christmas.  I bought one of their famous linen kimono tops, three pairs of crops and a necklace I had been coveting.  I did not have to pay for shipping because the total amount was over $100.  Two of the crops were a disappointment because I did not carefully look at them nor read about their cut. (I am a slim leg, not a boot leg gal.)  Much to my surprise I found out how easy it is to return items to the store at no charge.

The Eddie Bauer purchases I have made in the past were never a disappointment.  A number of times I have returned items to Lands’ End by bringing them to a local Sears Store.  I am concerned I will not have that option in the future because of fear that Sears will close.

Here are the online retailers the “marketing group” told me about with some editorial comments:

J. jill

Lands’ End – sizes are often big for smaller size women

Soft Surroundings – this online retailer was mentioned by several. Other women had never heard of it.

Cold Water Creek – a favorite store when they had actual retail shops

L.L. Bean – one woman snorted that she no longer shops there because the founder supports Trump!

Chico’s – A number of the women expressed disappointment about the quality of the clothes recently


Copyright – Elizabeth J. Wheeler, March 6, 2018